Interested in Angoras, but a total newbie!

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BKLD

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Hello from Texas!

I have never owned a rabbit before, and I'm currently in the research stage. I'm highly interested in English Angoras, but haven't gotten the chance to talk to many Angora owners or breeders yet. So, that's why I'm here :) .

Of course, there's a lot I don't know about raising rabbits and Angoras in particular, but I'm excited to learn!
 

Mini Lop Fan

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Hi BLKD! Welcome to RabbitTalk. I do not currently raise angoras, but I did get two angoras from a mixed litter of two short furred rabbits, and they were adorable. However, be prepared to spend lots of time on grooming and fur care. :D
 

BKLD

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Grooming is no problem. I actually find it quite relaxing...hence the choice of an Angora :D .
 

a7736100

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The French ones I have are really docile but gets mats easily. They are fed pellets and green vegetable trimmings.
 

hotzcatz

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English angoras are usually pretty docile, at least, the ones here are.

There can be quite a bit of difference in coat maintenance from one rabbit to another, even within the same breed. Usually, I'll let the bunnies grow out their coat for the first four or five months to determine how much maintenance it will need. If it's a high maintenance coat, then that bunny won't be bred. We've now got some fairly low maintenance angoras, but they still need coat maintenance.

Are you going to spin their fiber? Unless you're going to use the fiber for something, it may not be worth the amount of work to keep them.

Here's some English angoras and some grooming tools: http://hillsidefarmhawaii.com/pages/bunnycare/grooming.html
 

BKLD

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Yes, I am planning on spinning the fiber.
 

hotzcatz

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Mini Lop Fan":i493luv4 said:
Hi BLKD! Welcome to RabbitTalk. I do not currently raise angoras, but I did get two angoras from a mixed litter of two short furred rabbits, and they were adorable. However, be prepared to spend lots of time on grooming and fur care. :D

Two different folks have given me a 'New Zealand Angora' from when one of their meat rabbits showed up fuzzy. They were a nightmare for coat maintenance. It's like they got the pair of long hair recessive genes necessary for the long angora type coat, but they didn't get the guard hairs which are part of that angora coat so all they did was mat like crazy.

It takes at least two recessive genes (I think they're usually noted as two lower case "L"s) in order to express the angora length of coat, but I think there's a lot more to it than that. The meat folks told me they bred angoras into their lines in order to get better density for their pelts. For the first generation, there's not going to be any long wool, but if they manage to get two of the recessive long wool genes to match up in further generations, well, then they get fuzzy meat rabbits. But not really angora coated meat rabbits, just long hair that mats instantly. At least, from the two different ones that I have met, maybe it's different with other people's experience.
 

PSFAngoras

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I’ve had angoras for 8 years now, go for it.

Do your research first on what they need nutritionally and make sure your up for the grooming (as hotcats said, different breeds AND different lines mean different grooming requirements!), but they’re worth it.

I’ve never had English or Giant, and the Satin lines I’ve had were too high maintenance for me, but I had French primarily for six years and they’re a great lower maintenance molting (blanket statement, again, this depends on lines) breed. Around here they tend to be a little more outgoing in temperament than the other angoras but very sweet, however I’ve been switching to Germans slowly the last two years as they’re much higher production, though they need shorn. Sweetest and most mellow rabbits I’ve ever owned though, and no grooming needed between shearings every 90 days or so. Though he doesn’t look like much the buck in the photo just gave me 290g last weekend ( 10.3 oz).
 

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hotzcatz

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Yay, Nubbit! 10+ ounces is a great shearing! We only get about half that amount per wool harvest, but we have the smaller English.

Each angora breed has a different type and quantity of fiber. The Germans & Giants have more wool, although it's not as soft as the English (or so they say, I've not had any German or Giant to compare), the Satin has less wool that's (again, supposedly) less soft but really shiny. The angoras other than the English have clean faces without wool on them so they're easier to keep unmatted.

When spun up into yarn, the English is really soft, but doesn't have the halo that the French or Satin has. I think the German and Giant also has the halo on the yarn?

A lot of which ones to choose probably is determined by what you want to do. If you're going to have one or three for fiber critters and don't plan to breed them, then perhaps selecting one for quantity of wool (with halo), maybe one for shine plus one for softness may get you the yarn you want.
 

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